Contemporary day surgery: patients’ experience of discharge and recovery
Article first published online: 18 MAY 2007
Journal of Clinical Nursing
Volume 16, Issue 6, pages 1109–1117, June 2007
How to Cite
Gilmartin, J. (2007), Contemporary day surgery: patients’ experience of discharge and recovery. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 16: 1109–1117. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2007.01548.x
- Issue published online: 18 MAY 2007
- Article first published online: 18 MAY 2007
- Submitted for publication: 1 July 2005 Accepted for publication: 4 November 2005
- coping strategies;
- day surgery;
- information gaps;
- patient challenges;
- preparation for discharge;
- symptoms experienced at home
Aim. To explore and reveal patients’ perceptions of discharge arrangements and recovery following day surgery.
Introduction. Contemporary day surgery is increasingly being used to carry out elective surgical procedures enabling patients to be discharged on the same day. The Department of Health and government modernization programmes in the UK have encouraged this rapid growth. Preparation for discharge is important because patients require knowledge and understanding about self-management and access to primary health care services if required.
Methods. Using a phenomenological approach, data were collected by unstructured interviews from 30 patients undergoing gynaecology, urology and general surgery procedures.
Results. Deficits in patient preparation for discharge including the timing of information giving postprocedure for all groups were highlighted. The gynaecology patients pointed to a specific lack of verbal information about resuming sexual activity following procedures. Some general surgery and urology patients alluded to finding it stressful coping with threats to body image through ‘skin discoloration’, ‘swelling’ or ‘bruising’, because they did not know what to do. A number of urology patients talked about the challenges posed by difficulty with voiding, dysuria and haematuria.
Relevance to clinical practice. The results and problems identified have applicability for the development of discharge planning services and patient education in a day surgery context. It is suggested that the use of evidenced-based and innovative interventions among health professionals might improve patient outcomes.